President Obama has made class warfare a centerpiece of his campaign, attacking the rich and demonizing Mitt Romney’s wealth while at the same time begging for money from wealthy liberals. The hypocrisy isn’t getting past R. Donahue Peebles. Peebles is a long-time Democrat backer who built his wealth in the private sector. He tells the Huffington Post that Obama’s political attacks on wealth are backfiring.
HuffPost was not the only news organization that Peebles spoke with on Monday or Tuesday. He was also quoted in The New York Times, Politico and the Hill. Peebles told the Times that he found certain attacks by Democrats on Romney’s wealth to be “offensive.”
But in a 20-minute conversation with HuffPost Monday, Peebles went much further in blasting Obama’s campaign messaging than he has before. He said, as he told other press outlets, that his frustration was sparked by receiving an email from the DNC that mocked Romney as “out of touch” for having a boat that fit 12 people, accompanied by a picture of the Republican presumptive nominee on vacation.
“That offended me. Now if I were on the fence, he’d have lost me,” said Peebles, who described himself as nonetheless a “big supporter of the president’s.”
“What I get concerned about is the message from the Obama campaign that we only want someone who has not been successful to run for president. What do we want here? You can’t be successful and run the country? We don’t want somebody who has been successful to run it? That doesn’t make sense,” Peebles said. “So I look at that and I see that those things are becoming offensive to some of his strongest supporters, financially.
“It would be unrealistic to think that that kind of thing would not impact the enthusiasm for those who are supportive of the president, financially, and certainly would turn off others who were on the fence to say, ‘You know, what the heck with it. I’m done,'” Peebles continued. “And they go on to Romney.
“And so what’s happening is they’ve awakened a sleeping giant. This time around, business leaders, business executives and corporations will be involved in the political process like they’ve never been before, all because they’ve been awakened,” he said.
Peebles also blasted the Obama push to hike taxes on the wealthy.
“I’m so tired of hearing that the rich are not paying their fair share of taxes. Yeah we are,” Peebles said. “The super vast majority of wealthy Americans do not wake up every day and say, ‘Let’s see how we can pay less than our fair share of taxes.’ They say, ‘We’re going to follow the law and we’re going to hire some good accountants to tell us how to do it. And we’re going to pay no more or no less than our fair share.’
“So to say that wealthy individuals are not paying their fair is unfair and delusional,” he said. “So what should be said is that the wealthy Americans should have their tax rates raised because we need more money. Now by the way, if they got all these tax raises it still wouldn’t put a dent in the national debt.”
He wasn’t done.
“We cannot attack wealth creation and attack people just because they’re wealthy and we can’t attack wealth and success, and making that a bad thing. It’s like going to school and the bullies picking on the A-students, calling them nerds and so forth. So, what do we want, a whole school of dummies?”
And Peebles also defended Romney from the Obama campaign’s criticisms over the candidate’s bank accounts in Switzerland and the Cayman Islands.
And so forth. Read the whole thing. Peebles’ comments are quite a bit more substantive and revealing than, say, the latest musings of Meghan McCain. He reveals that every time Obama rings the class warfare bell, Mitt Romney collects more campaign coin.